The client requirement was for an office and showroom facility to replace a previous building destroyed by fire.
The brief was to provide a structure which could be erected quickly; would use wood products as much as possible; and would have the potential to be dismantled and rebuilt on a different site. The concept proposed by NORD was to make a feature of the structure by using diagonally braced trusses to form the perimeter walls, utilising proprietary manufactured members designed to accommodate both horizontal and vertical loads. To avoid time-consuming and expensive substructure works the foundations were designed as a series of masonry piers built off the existing formation, which comprised a concrete ground-bearing slab. This also simplified the dismantling procedure in the event of the structure being relocated in the future. The roof and floor were typical suspended timber joist layouts overlaid with timber boarding, enabling these units to act as horizontal diaphragms to distribute lateral wind loads to the foundations. This load was transferred from the roof diaphragm to the side trusses, which distributed wind through the bracing arrangement to the foundations.
Resistance to sliding and uplift was provided by the weight of masonry blocks built between the pier supports. Steel strap connections ensured interaction between the superstructure and the foundations.